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The Airmen's Stories - F/O W S Moore

When the names of all Battle of Britain airmen were being drawn up for inclusion on the monument in 2004/2005, this was the data available for a pilot of 236 Squadron;

William Storey Moore of Melbourne, Australia joined the RAF on a short service commission in June 1937. He was first posted to 10 FTS Tern Hill on 21st August that year, completed his training and joined the FAA Pool at Gosport on 10th October 1938.


Above image courtesy of Kristen Alexander.


In early 1940 Moore was serving with 236 Squadron, operating Blenheims throughout the Battle.

He was killed on 24th December 1943 as a Squadron Leader with 143 Squadron.

At 0630hrs six He177s took off in pairs on an armed reconnaissance of the Bay of Biscay which, due to the poor weather, was uneventful until 1330hrs when four Bristol Beaufighters were spotted. 

At 0950hrs four Beaufighters from 143 Squadron had taken off from Portreath in Cornwall on an interceptor patrol.  Moore was the flight leader in Beaufighter XI JM160.

At 1250hrs, two He177s were spotted and Moore lead the attack, closing in to 200 yards and opening fire.  However, he had got too close to the defensive armament of the He177 A-3 flown by Lt. Richard Kranz of 4./KG40 and to the horror of the other three RAF crews, there was a 'vivid flash in front which caused aircraft 'N' to disintegrate'.

Moore and his navigator P/O PH Froment were killed instantly.  The remaining Beaufighters flown by F/Sgt. D Howley, F/Sgt. R Gillchrist and American 1st/Lt. R Dymek then attacked with the latter carrying out three attacks which set the starboard engine on fire.

The Heinkel glided down, hit the sea, disintegrated and burst into flames.  There were no survivors.

Above research courtesy of Chris Goss.


In late 2012 Australian author and historian Kristen Alexander retrieved the following information;

William Storey Moore was born in Dublin, Eire on 21st November 1916 and attended schools there until 1932. He continued his education in Australia between 1934 and 1936 (presumably going there with his family). He joined the RAF after returning from Australia to the UK.

He married on 4th July 1940 at St. Peter’s Church, Over Wallop, Hampshire and his wife’s maiden name was Beck. His father was William Moore MA of 10 Frankford Road, Dundrum, Co. Dublin, Eire and his mother was Mrs. GI Moore, Dartmouth, Dartry Road, Dublin, Eire.

It seems that as his widow, Cecilia Moore, moved to Melbourne, Australia sometime after his death and he had a school record there it became assumed that he had been of Australian nationality.


Moore was 27 and is commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial, Panel 118.

Although it not now possible to alter the bronze name panels it may be safely assumed that Moore was most likely of Irish nationality.


For Kristen's full research please click here


Above image courtesy of Dean Sumner.


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